£6million fund to unlock offshore renewable innovation

3rd March 2017

A £6million grant fund has been launched to help more than 200 companies unlock innovations in offshore renewable energy.

The SCORE programme, being delivered by the OrbisEnergy innovation and incubation centre in Lowestoft, Suffolk, provides grants of up to £50,000 to support companies developing new technologies. Funding is available to small and medium sized businesses in Cambridgeshire, Essex, Norfolk, and Suffolk.

SCORE programme managers are particularly interested to hear from oil & gas companies looking to diversify into offshore renewables.

Johnathan Reynolds, of OrbisEnergy, said: “This is more than double the amount of money in the previous SCORE programme, which supported over 50 companies, invested in 40 projects and created 70 new jobs.

“This time we’re confident we can help over 200 businesses to develop their bright ideas, and in the process create 100 additional jobs for the region.

“With some of the biggest wind farms in the world being built off the east coast, our region has firmly established itself as the UK’s principal hub for offshore renewable energy, with an experienced and highly inventive supply chain.

“The SCORE programme will help to unleash great new ideas to lower costs and increase efficiency in technologies behind offshore wind, wave, tidal and other marine sectors.”

“We welcome ideas from oil & gas companies looking at diversifying into offshore wind and developing innovations to reduce costs in the growing sector.”

The programme is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and is open to companies with fewer than 250 employees and an annual turnover of less than 50 million euros. Grants are available for up to 40% of eligible costs or £50,000, whichever is the lower, with a minimum grant of £2,500. Start-up and established companies in the four counties can apply.

The funding is designed to help companies in a wide range of areas, including research and development, collaboration with universities and research bodies, securing patents, acquiring specialist equipment or services and investigating the commercial viability of processes and technologies.

Mr Reynolds said several companies had already shown an interest in the SCORE programme and he was expecting a large number of enquiries now that it had been officially launched. More information is available on 01502 563368 or score@orbisenergy.co.uk.

Case studies showcasing companies who benefited from the previous £2.5million SCORE programme can be seen at www.scoregrants.co.uk

The current programme is delivered by OrbisEnergy in partnership with enterprise specialists Nwes, energy industry experts Nautilus Associates and the national Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult centre.

Ends

Issued for OrbisEnergy by TMS Media.

For further information please contact:
Johnathan Reynolds at OrbisEnergy on 01502 563368 or 07787 518643 (Johnathan.reynolds@nautilus.uk.com)

Steve Scott at TMS Media on 01493 662929 (steve.scott@tms-media.co.uk)

Picture caption:
Johnathan Reynolds, of OrbisEnergy, says SCORE will unleash great new ideas.

Note to Editors:

OrbisEnergy is the hub for offshore renewables at the UK’s most easterly point in Lowestoft, Suffolk. It is a leading technology, innovation and incubation centre, acting as a catalyst for sector growth and supply chain development.

OrbisEnergy is owned by Suffolk County Council, and managed by Nwes Property Services Ltd.

The SCORE project has received £3,000,000 of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Department for Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for the European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations.
For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding.

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